Thai man jailed for theft, COVID-19 cure mischief

Fadley Faisal

The Magistrate’s Court yesterday sentenced a Thai citizen to four months’ imprisonment for theft and mischief caused claiming as a cure for the coronavirus.

Mohammad Abdul Hakeem bin Abdullah @ Anurat Leksingto, 51, was first indicted in the Magistrate’s Court on July 1, on a charge of theft of a gas cylinder from a house in Kampong Pekilong Muara at 3am on June 29, and on another charge of causing damage to a window of a neighbouring house by throwing the gas cylinder at 4am.

Deputy Public Prosecutor Ahmad Firdaus bin Mohammad, at the last mention of the case, informed the court that the prosecution had reason to suspect that the defendant might be of unsound mind.

Magistrate Mohammad Marzuqi bin Sabtu ordered the defendant to undergo mental assessment at the Mental Health Unit where he was found of sound mind to plead and stand trial. He pleaded guilty and agreed with the statement of facts read to him in court yesterday.

The facts state that the defendant was resting at home in Kampong Pekilong, Muara at 7pm on June 28, when he thought up with an idea on how to cure the coronavirus.

He took a gas cylinder belonging to his brother-in-law, who was living in the same house, at around midnight.

He brought the gas cylinder out and left it outside the house, before returning inside to ask his brother-in-law for a lighter.

His brother-in-law refused, even when the defendant told him that it was necessary to cure the coronavirus.

He then went to his neighbour’s house. He knocked on the window without receiving a reply.

The defendant then took the gas cylinder and threw it at the window, smashing it. He climbed through the broken window, alarming the occupants who alerted the police.

The police arrested the defendant upon arriving at the scene.

During investigations, the defendant told the police he consumed methylamphetamine for two consecutive days before committing the offences.

The psychiatric report stated that the defendant was suffering from acute intoxication at the time of the offences.